Monday, May 12, 2014

Pasta alla Vodka



Have you been to any good Italian restaurant lately? If so, I'm pretty sure that one of the pasta dishes on the menu was the Penne alla Vodka. This is a very popular dish  (and for good reasons!), and it might be one of your favorite.
Tonight I want to show that you too can make pasta alla vodka just like the one at the restaurant.
What you will need is penne or another short pasta, like the rigatoni in my picture, a good can of tomatoes  (I like the San Marzano whole tomatoes that I quickly crush with a hand blender), hot peppers to make the pasta as spicy as you like, and of course, some good vodka!
Sometimes this sauce also comes with pancetta, but I personally prefer it without it. This way, it's also a great vegetarian recipe.
It will take you no more than 30 minutes to prepare this spicy, rich and creamy pasta. I'm sure you will be delighted with the results!


Ingredients serving 4 people:
  • 3 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 hot peppers - or more if you like a spicy sauce
  • 1 small can (15 oz) of crushed tomatoes
  • 1/3 cup of vodka
  • 1/3 cup of heavy whipping cream
  • 3 tablespoons of freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • salt
  • 12 oz of rigatoni or penne pasta.
Preparation time: No more than 30 minutes

Directions:
Step 1: In a medium saucepan, heat the olive with the onion and hot peppers. Saute' the onion over medium-low heat until translucent, about 5 minutes.









Step 2: Add the crushed tomatoes. Season with salt,  and pepper if you like.



Step 3: Cook the sauce for 10-15 minutes. At this point add the vodka. Cover the saucepan and simmer over low heat for 5 more minutes.
In the meantime, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil, and cook the pasta.



Step 4: Uncover and add the heavy cream. Simmer over medium heat for a few more minutes.

As soon as the pasta is ready, drain and add to the saucepan. Mix well, and add most of the Parmesan cheese. Save some of the cheese to sprinkle over each plate at the end.

And here it is: pasta alla vodka, just like at your favorite Italian restaurant!


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